Elise Thatcher

Reporter

Elise Thatcher joined Aspen Public Radio in 2013. Previously she worked as a freelancer, covering Southwestern Colorado, as well as with Colorado Public Radio, National Public Radio, KBOO Portland, and KWCW Whitman College. Elise is an award-winning journalist who relishes digging deep into complex issues, as well as covering day to day stories. When away from the microphone, she enjoys rock climbing, mountain biking, backcountry skiing, and other outdoor opportunities.

Ways to Connect

Elise Thatcher

There’s no answer yet on whether Aspen will have a runoff election in June. Election officials have until this evening to figure out whether twenty-three ballots are valid. They’ve already confirmed that three qualify to be counted.

Elise Thatcher

History was made last night when the majority of Aspenites changed the city’s home rule charter, stripping power away from elected officials. Referendum 1, also known as “Keep Aspen, Aspen” passed by a slim margin of 53% to 47%. The ballot count came in at 1297 to 1141 votes Tuesday night.

Elise Thatcher

Aspen voters re-elected their mayor and kept a city council member. A second council seat is to be determined. It was a night of awkward moments, as incumbent Mayor Steve Skadron once again bested Torre. The two went toe to toe in a runoff two years ago. This time, Skadron won handily, by about 400 votes.

Elise Thatcher

UPDATE - 11:21pm

Unofficial final results - Steve Skadron will keep his seat as Mayor against his second challenge from Torre. Skadron takes the win by about 400 votes.  

Carolyn Sackariason

If a governmental entity wants to build in Aspen's city limits, they have to get a review in 60 days. But that fast track does not apply to building projects by the City of Aspen. Confused? Aspen Public Radio's Elise Thatcher explains.

Garfield County

Garfield County Commissioners are getting exasperated with an access dispute just outside Carbondale. They’re planning a public walking tour next week and meeting the week after to figure out how to resolve the matter.

Elise Thatcher

Two young residents of the Roaring Fork Valley are pitching in with the effort to help repair after the massive earthquake in Nepal. Basalt residents Tashi Jackson and Karuna Owens are starting a fundraising competition.

http://www.weymouth.ma.us/

Questions have been raised about Aspen’s affordable housing authority. Aspen Public Radio spoke with legal experts about whether it could be vulnerable to lawsuits. They say probably not, contradicting APCHA’s former director.

Tracy Olson/Flickr

City Council incumbent Adam Frisch is at the head of the pack, when it comes to raising money for this spring election, and keeping his Council seat. Frisch raised more than $8,000 from April 10th to April 28th. That’s almost twice of the runner up, Mick Ireland.

Elise Thatcher

Earlier this week Aspen City Council approved paying for a consulting company to gather data, pinpoint the goals of the housing program, and recommend  improvements to the guidelines. The analysis begins next week. One area that will be reviewed closely is the qualification requirements for someone who wants to live in Aspen’s affordable housing program.

Aspen City Council is getting up to speed on a time limit for how long the municipal government has to review government development projects. The city's planning department is recommending Aspen follow a mandatory 60 day time limit for ruling on a municipal development proposal. That's according to state law.

Global Dental Relief

Many residents in the Roaring Fork Valley have spent time in Nepal or have friends or family in the Himalayan country. Redstone resident Sue McEvoy happened to be there during the earthquake and is still there now. She’s with the group Global Dental Relief, a Denver-based nonprofit which provides dental care for children.

  There’s more information now about a recently released document concerning Aspen’s affordable housing program. It’s come to light that the Aspen Pitkin County Housing Authority has lost much of its power to the Aspen City Manager’s office.

Elise Thatcher

  Schools and daycare centers in the Roaring Fork Valley are getting ready for tighter  state rules around vaccines. Colorado’s Health Department will soon beef up how often parents must confirm their child is not vaccinated. The changes come because of Colorado’s lower vaccination rate and events like the mini measles outbreak this winter.

Valerie Perry

Pete McBride has had an invigorating last few months. He’s been on the road with his film, “Delta Dawn,” about his journey down the Colorado River, and seeing its waters meet the ocean for the first time in decades. McBride’s film has garnered several awards. He talks with Aspen Public Radio’s Elise Thatcher about the feedback he’s gotten from moviegoers and film festivals.

 

Nathan Lopez Photography

Colorado Mountain College has chosen a Dean for its Roaring Fork Campus. Heather Exby will lead the three locations for the broader Valley-wide campus: Carbondale, Spring Valley, and Glenwood Springs.

Mountain Edition - April 23rd, 2015

Apr 23, 2015

Good afternoon, it’s Mountain Edition.

RFTA gets millions for more parking, service, and facilities.

A Basalt woman is sentenced for causing a fatal accident last August.

Aspen Skiing Company and pro skier Alice McKennis look back on the season.

There’s a new book about Glenwood Springs history.

A nonprofit aims to restore part of the Crystal River in Carbondale.

And we find out about the country’s biggest conservation effort ever and a bird here in Colorado.

That’s ahead on Mountain Edition.

Elise Thatcher

There’s a new book about the history of Glenwood Springs. Called "Images of Early Glenwood Springs," it’s a compilation of photos from the late 1800s through 1920. Cynthia Hines is the author, and she’s also Executive Director of the Frontier Historical Society in Glenwood Springs. Aspen Public Radio’s Elise Thatcher talks with Hines about the book.

 

screengrab NBC

Glenwood Springs resident Alice McKennis is having a great spring. The professional ski racer and twenty-five-year old won a national title at the US Alpine Championships in March. She took first in the Super Giant Slalom. It was a strong finish to what she calls a good season. McKennis talks with Aspen Public Radio’s Elise Thatcher about what it was like earning first place, after a long road to recovery following two broken legs.

Elise Thatcher

Candidates for Aspen’s City Council met for another forum last night. It focused on issues that are key for many to residents in their 20s, 30s and 40s. Six contenders perched on bar chairs and answered questions in the Sky Hotel. Most were about affordable housing and how to develop better job opportunities in the community.

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